Five Business Trends For The Second Half Of 2012
Things are looking up for businesses these days. While the current forecast still has a long way toward improving to match the “glory days” of year’s past, America is showing signs toward further removing itself from the dark days of the recent recession that have impacted so many of our country’s businesses. And yes, the second half of 2012 is showing further signs of life as the nation continues to rebound. Here are five business trends to keep an eye on in the second half of this year:
It wasn’t too long ago that we were all fearing a “double-dip” recession, but now that’s looking like far less of a possibility, according to Kiplinger. Kiplinger states that aside from another major financial crisis or war, another recession is highly unlikely to occur.
With another recession seemingly out of the works, that means that things are moving in the right direction. For instance, this is the third year in a row that the GDP has increased, and it’s likely to increase in the second half of the year by about 2 percent, which is a bit more than its increase in the first half of the year. Furthermore, it’s said that about 2 million new jobs will be added this year, which is up from how many were added in 2011. This decreases the unemployment number, which is at an estimated 8.2 percent now and likely to be down to 8 percent by year’s end. These numbers all factor into positive news for businesses, and it’s estimated that business spending on things like building and equipment upkeep is expected to increase as the year continues. Better facilities and hardware not only makes for happier workers, but for increased efficiency, which can also factor into more profit.
It’s expected that the year will round out with a 6 percent increase in retail growth. This is less than the 7.4 percent increase that 2011 saw, but it’s certainly better than a retail decrease. Don’t be fooled by the roller coaster that has been the stock market this year – business profits are solid and expected to continue to rise.
The inflation rate is expected to be higher in the second half of 2012 than it was in the first half of the year at about 2 percent.
While social media doesn’t effect your business, per say, on the economic scale that the other factors listed here do, it’s becoming increasingly important to building brand awareness. For instance, Internet search engines are beginning to weigh social media use into search engine results, meaning that those businesses that are more active on the likes of Facebook and Twitter are more likely to appear in search engines compared to those that aren’t active. So investing more in social media can, essentially, increase your leads and thereby your sales. It’s an emerging trend that’s far too important to be ignored.